I have had crooked front teeth for most of my life. I had no choice but to get used to them as a kid, because my parents didn’t have the extra money for orthodontics. It made me very self conscious as I grew up. Now that I’m an adult, I have been exploring my options to get my teeth straightened. The main issue I have is that one my front teeth is crooked.
I have researched different treatments, like Invisalign or braces. But I’ve talked to a couple dentists that have offered differing treatment plans. The main issue for me is a front tooth that sits back further from the rest and it isn’t straight. One dentist even talked about pulling the crooked tooth. But, I’d like to avoid that if possible.
Should I find a cosmetic dentist to see what other options are available?
-Leo in California
If you are an adult and your jaw is done growing, Invisalign should be an option for you. But, to answer your question, a cosmetic dentist would be a wise choice. It is far better to spend time researching the best cosmetic dentist in your area, versus going into a dentist and telling them what kind of treatment you’d like. Cosmetic dentistry isn’t like comparing to products or services online. It is always best to go in for a consultation because there are many factors that influence the best treatment plan for your unique case.
Also, not every dentist is equal. As a patient, it can be difficult since we usually trust what a dentist says because it is their area of expertise. But with cosmetic dentistry, it is not a regulated field within dentistry. This means that any general or family dentist can say they will do porcelain veneers or another cosmetic dentistry treatment without having any additional training. In order to do beautiful cosmetic dentistry requires extensive training beyond dental school, since the techniques and bonding technologies are not taught in traditional dental school settings. In fact, less than two percent of dentists have the ability to do stunning cosmetic dentistry.
Since the area you are wanting to improve is your front teeth that show each time you smile, it would be wise to meet with an experienced cosmetic dentist.
It is unlikely that a cosmetic dentist would recommend pulling your tooth because it would make your smile appear uneven when you smile. If you have an uneven number of front teeth, it will look asymmetrical. Now, depending on how crooked your front tooth is and how far back it sits, you may be a candidate for porcelain veneers. This treatment plan wouldn’t physically straighten your tooth, but it would give the appearance of a straightened tooth. Porcelain veneers are very thin shells or porcelain that are bonded to the surface of your tooth. But again, not any dentist can do them well.
A cosmetic dentist should also be experienced with Invisalign. This treatment generally straightens teeth in about half the time as traditional metal braces. They are clear so from a conversational distance, no one will be able to tell you are wearing the Invisalign aligners. Also, they are much more comfortable than metal braces and can be removed for eating and cleaning. It uses sophisticated computer technology to gradually reposition teeth to the correct positions.
Now, it is possible that you may be referred to an orthodontist depending on the placement and severity of your case. But from what you have mentioned, it sounds like one tooth is the main problem. So, a cosmetic dentist should be able to give you recommendations to get you smiling again.
Thank you for your questions. Remember, it’s all about finding a dentist you can trust instead of finding a treatment you think it right without their input.
This post is sponsored by York PA dentist Donald H. Currie, DMD.